Tech giant Apple partnered with Flipkart to sell its iPhone 7 on the Bengaluru-based etailer’s platform from October 7. The new partnership will allow Flipkart to source iPhone 7 directly from Apple, unlike previous years when it would source the phones from third-party sellers.
This year, it would be the first time when Apple joined hands with a consumer-facing online player to sell a new iPhone version. Infibeam, which has been an Apple partner for some years, will also receive the new iPhones directly, but it is known more as a bulk seller, one that does not deal with consumers directly.
At first, Flipkart declined to remark on the matter while an e-mail sent to the Apple India spokesperson did not elicit any response. Flipkart, which has the largest etail market share in India, generates a major chunk of its revenues from sales of smartphones. Multiple smartphone brands, including Motorola and LeEco, sell exclusively on Flipkart. As per an exclusive report by TOI, Flipkart sold 1 lakh units of Motorola’s latest E3 range in 24 hours recently.
The iPhone 7 deals should give Flipkart a helping hand as it is facing rigid competition from American rival Amazon which has been investing deeply in the Indian market. Amazon too may tender iPhone 7s on its podium, but the lack of a direct deal with Apple will mean the margins it gets will be lower, and it will probably have less flexibility in managing the supply chain.